Wiggins claims Qatar time-trial

Britain’s triple Olympic gold medallist Bradley Wiggins has the leader’s jersey after winning the first stage of the Tour of Qatar, a 6km time-trial.

Wiggins, riding for American team Garmin, crossed the line first in six minutes and 34 seconds, just ahead of the Netherlands’ Hans Dekkers.

Garmin also topped the team standings – for the time of the fifth rider in each team to finish – ahead of Quick Step.

The second stage, a 134km race, takes place on Monday.

“As a team we’ve put in long hours in pre-season training and it is good to see all of that effort paying off,” said Wiggins

“We were hoping to do well, but it is a surprise that we have managed to win the opening team time trial. It was tough, but we are pleased about the result.”

Briton Mark Cavendish, riding for Team Columbia, finished five seconds behind his former Madison partner, in 31st place.

Seventeen teams are taking part in the six-day race, which ends on 6 February.

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